Even the most aware pedestrians can still be at serious risk of harm if nearby drivers recklessly disobey traffic laws. If you were hit by a negligent driver while walking, you likely need no explanation of how painful and debilitating the injuries caused by this type of incident can be.
Fortunately, the Elgin pedestrian accident lawyers at the Law Offices of R.F. Wittmeyer, Ltd. may be able to help you take legal action against the driver who struck you and pursue comprehensive compensation for your injuries and losses. By retaining a skilled personal injury attorney, you could put yourself in a better position to establish liability for your accident and achieve a positive resolution to your civil claim.
Proving Liability for Crashes Involving Pedestrians
The duty of care that drivers assume once they get behind the wheel applies to everyone sharing the road with them, including pedestrians. Accordingly, if a driver does something reckless or careless and injures a pedestrian as a result, they could be held civilly liable. Claims of this sort operate in a similar way to lawsuits by any other victim of a car crash, be it a bicyclist, motorcyclist, or another driver.
Recovering compensation after this kind of incident generally requires the injured plaintiff to prove legal negligence by showing that the defendant did something reckless or careless that directly caused compensable losses. In practice, this means collecting evidence that the defendant broke a traffic law or did something irresponsible prior to the accident they allegedly caused. Depending on the circumstances, relevant evidence may include:
- Photographs and videos of the accident scene
- Medical documentation of the injuries sustained
- Eyewitness testimony
- Input from accident reconstruction experts
A diligent attorney in the vicinity of the accident could help Elgin pedestrians determine what pieces of information would most effectively prove liability. With legal guidance, that evidence could be persuasively incorporated into a potential case.
Recoverable Losses and Comparative Fault in Elgin
A successful civil plaintiff can seek compensation for both economic and non-economic damages stemming from a defendant’s negligent behavior. Economic damages are losses with quantitative financial values like medical bills and missed work wages, whereas non-economic damages are qualitative forms of harm like physical pain and loss of enjoyment of life.
However, civil courts in Illinois have the authority to reduce a plaintiff’s damage award by whatever percentage of fault they bear for the car crash, as per 735 Illinois Compiled Statutes §2-1116. For instance, if a pedestrian is found 20 percent at fault for their accident because they failed to look for oncoming traffic before entering a crosswalk, they would only be allowed to recover for 80 percent of their total damages at most.
Furthermore, if a plaintiff is found more than 50 percent at fault for their own damages, they will be ineligible to recover any compensation whatsoever. A local pedestrian injury lawyer can work to maximize recovery claims by contesting any allegations of comparative fault made against a plaintiff.
Talk with an Elgin Pedestrian Accident Attorney Today
While a car crash can cause debilitating harm to anyone involved, pedestrians are unprotected and more likely to suffer severe injuries when struck by negligent motorists. However, proving a motorist legally liable to pay for injuries can be challenging even when fault seems obvious. This can be even more difficult if you try to pursue your case alone.
Do not put yourself at a disadvantage when attempting to recover for your accident and protect your future prospects. Call today to speak with an Elgin pedestrian accident lawyer about how your potential claim could benefit from skilled legal support.